Two Russian Navy destroyers in charge of protecting the aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov on its deployment to the Mediterranean have detected and chased away a Dutch Navy submarine which attempted to spy on the group, Russian Ministry of Defence said.
According to several media reports, including that of Russian RT, the submarine came as close as 20 kilometers to the carrier and was identified as a Walrus-class vessel, the sole submarine type the Dutch Navy currently operates.
Destroyers tracked the submarine for almost an hour before chasing it away, the report further said.
While the Dutch defense ministry said it does not comment on the nation’s submarine operations, the country’s defense minister Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert told BCC that it would be wise “not to go along with the Russian rhetoric”.
The Russian carrier strike group is currently sailing in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea where it will presumably engage in air strikes against ISIS strongholds in the Syrian city of Aleppo.
Admiral Kuznetsov’s deployment has been closely monitored by the western media ever since the ship left the Severomorsk port early October.
Two weeks ago, Spain came under pressure from other EU countries and NATO officials after it allowed the carrier strike group to refuel in its port of Ceuta. Russia withdrew its request for refueling in Spain following the media outrage.